A busy night in the gallery
It was BIG
'BIG' is probably
the best word to describe last Saturday night's opening of Mildura's
innovative Art Vault.
Not big in the sense of being bloated, grandiose, or over the top, but in
a colourful, fun and festive way. The opening was big on people - with
about 500 attending; big on big names - Julian Burnside, Robyn Archer and
Rod Quantock were there; big on colourful - both in the art and in the
dress of those attending, and big on fine hospitality with the finger food
and the wine flowing freely.
It was, quite simply, the biggest opening for an arts event in recent
memory, spilling freely out of the avant-garde Art Vault and onto Deakin
While the art hanging on the walls was much admired, the same could be
said of the hostesses, 'coiffured' to perfection by the team at Visions
and wearing a colourful riot of printed cloth, courtesy of the Vault's
in-house artists and again, like the hair, styled by the Visions team.
The was a welcome to country, a didgeridoo player, music by the Songbook
Trio, speeches by special guests including Stefano De Pieri, Robyn Archer,
Julian Burnside and the Mayor of Mildura, Cr John Arnold, and a big thank
you from the Vault's owner Julie Chambers.
Streamers cascaded down on the 'outside' crowd from the Vault's roof at
one point, highlighting that this was a celebration of something new and
special, and much more than another 'cut the ribbon' opening.
Having had a few days to let it all sink in, Julie Chambers, was this week
pleased with the opening and justifiably confident that it was a fitting
introduction for her new enterprise to the community.
There are a multitude of plans in the pipeline, and the Art Vault is
already attracting international attention.
There can be no doubt there are exciting times ahead for the arts in our
By Grant Maynard,
Mildura Weekly, November 7, 2008
From left: Julian Burnside, Julie
Chambers, Robyn Archer, Stefano De Pieri and Rod Quantock
Vault draws arty
crowd to opening
More than 400 people
turned out for the opening of Mildura's newest art gallery.
Art Vault in Deakin Avenue was officially opened at an invitation only
event on Saturday.
The $2.5 million art hub was also opened to the public for tours on
As well as being a world-class gallery, the venue features workshop areas,
10 resident artists, accommodation and a printing press.
The building has been refurbished after a colourful history as a bank,
backpackers venue, brothel, boxing ring and games parlour.
Julie Chambers, Art Vault owner, said the new facilities would attract
more artists to Sunraysia.
"Now they have somewhere to stay, study and work," she said.
"It will better connect people."
Ms Chambers said Art Vault was a much-needed facility.
"Now we can show a mix of national, international, indigenous and
November 4, 2008
Ready to face the
Revelling in the
opportunity to become a major player in the national arts scene, local
business entrepreneur Julie Chambers and her hard working team are now
ready to officially launch their exciting new addition to Mildura's
fledgling commercial art industry - The Art Vault.
In conjunction with the Mildura Jazz, Food and Wine Festival, the gallery
will be opened tomorrow night by human rights and refugee advocate Julian
Burnside QC, with the evening to feature the comic talents of compere Rod
Quantock, along with special guest speakers Stefano De Pieri and renowned
performer and artistic director Robyn Archer.
Housed in the former Bank building located at 43 Deakin Avenue in Mildura,
this ambitious and privately funded project incorporates two galleries, 10
individual studio spaces, state-of-the-art etching and lithography
facilities and two artist in residence apartments, all of which will add
to the cultural engagement of Mildura and the broader arts community.
For a number of years, the La Trobe University and the Sunraysia Institute
of TAFE have produced many visual arts graduates, however Mildura's
isolation often forces them to seek an alternative form of employment, or
even contemplate a moved away from the region to facilitate their creative
Mildura based artist, Filomena Coppola, along with fellow local residents,
glass maker Mia Kolpin and sculptor, Geoff Brown, have welcomed the new
centre with open arms, suggesting that it will become a real 'juggernaut
within the vibrant arts community'.
The Art Vault will not only become a contemporary home to the outstanding
talents of locals such as Filomena, Geoff and Mia, but it will also play
host to the works of a number award-winning artists including Charles
Blackman, John Olsen and Cherry Hood.
Tomorrow night's Deakin Avenue road front celebration is an
invitation-only affair, however readers can gain access to the galleries,
printmaking workshops, artists studios and residences at The Art Vault on
Sunday between 11am and 4pm, and again on Monday and Tuesday, also between
11am and 4pm.
Normal hours of operation for the gallery will be between 10am and 5pm
from Wednesday through Saturday and Sundays from 11am until 4pm.
October 31, 2008
Photographs by Adam
McGrath and Joe Pasquale